Covenants Not To Compete – By The Numbers

In a recently published article, three professors undertook an empirical analysis of noncompetition and other restrictive postemployment covenants in public company Chief Executive Officer contracts.  Norman D. Bishara, Kenneth J. Martin, and Randall S. Thomas, An Empirical Analysis of Noncompetition Clauses and Other Restrictive Postemployment Covenants, 68 Van. L. Rev. 1 (2015).  Readers should be cognizant

The Point Of An Unenforceable Noncompete May Be Very Sharp Indeed

Writing for Mother Jones, Kevin Drum recently asked “What’s the point of an unenforceable noncompete agreement?”  He posits two possible answers: First, it’s just boilerplate language they don’t really care about but left in just in case.  The second is that they find it useful as a coercive threat. UCLA Law School Professor Stephen Bainbridge picked

California Court Issues Non-Competition Order

Covenants not to compete have been in legislative disfavor in California since 1872.  This animus is currently codified at Section 16600 of the Business and Professions Code which provides that with certain statutory exceptions “every contract by which anyone is restrained from engaging in a lawful profession, trade, or business of any kind is to that

Covenants Not To Compete – Fourth DCA Considers A New Fine Question (Or Two)

I’ve written many times about Section 16600 of California’s Business & Professions Code which, with limited exceptions, voids covenants not to compete.  See TRO Issued Enjoining Breach Of Non-Compete Agreement Clauses, No Surprises Here – California Court Won’t Enforce Non-Compete, Court Says “No Way” To No-Hire, and California’s Hostility To Non-Compete Agreements Does Not Vitiate Forum

California’s GO-Biz Site Bedeviled By Errors and Omissions

According to the website, the California Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development (GO-Biz) was created “to serve as California’s single point of contact for economic development and job creation efforts”.  While the site does provide some very basic level of information, it is dangerously incomplete and riddled with manifest errors.  No advice would be better

U.S. Supreme Court Holds That State Courts Must Not Assume The Arbitrator’s Role By Declaring Non-Compete Agreements Null And Void

A short per curiam opinion issued yesterday by the United States Supreme Court concerning an employment dispute in Oklahoma is likely to result in consternation in California.  Nitro-Lift Technologies, L.L.C. v. Howard, 568 U.S. ___ (2012) involved a dispute between an employer and two of its former employees.  The employees had signed confidentiality and noncompetition agreements that

Court Rejects Use Of Alter Ego Doctrine To “Borrow” Contractor License

California’s Contractors’ State License Law, Business & Professions Code Section 7000 et seq., requires contractors to be licensed unless they are exempt from licensure.  Those who perform contracting work without a license run a very real risk of working for free.  Section 7031(b) provides, with one exception, that a person who uses an unlicensed contractor may bring

California’s Hostility To Non-Compete Agreements Does Not Vitiate Forum Selection Clause

In numerous posts, I’ve discussed California’s policy against covenants not to compete as mandated by Business & Professions Code Section 16600.  From a different, more positive perspective, California could be characterized as having a strong policy in favor of employee mobility.  However Section 16600 may be characterized, it cannot be gainsaid that it’s very tough to get

Classifying A Coterie Of Covenants

Yesterday, I wrote about Judge Lucy Koh’s decision in SriCom, Inc. v. eBisLogic, Inc., 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 131082 (N.D. Cal., Sept. 13, 2012) concerning the enforceability of a no-hire agreement.  Judge Koh mentions an earlier ruling by Judge Marilyn Hall Patel that describes five categories of covenants not to compete, Thomas Weisel Ptnrs. LLC v. BNP

Court Says “No Way” To No-Hire

California is known for its hostility to covenants not to compete.  Legal antipathy to these kind of agreements didn’t start here, however.  According to some, it began in Roman times.  Eugene McQuillen, Validity of Contracts in Restraint of Trade, The Am. L. Reg. 219 (April 1885).  The Dyer’s case, (1414) 2 Hen. V, fol. 5, pl.